<br>All security personnel, who have been engaged in Covid-19 duty from January 2020, have rendered indomitable service to the people of the country wherein more than 85,000 Central Armed Police Force (CAPF) personnel were infected with the virus and 333 personnel succumbed to it, an official said.
According to the data published by the Central government on July 26 this year, the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) lost 127 personnel while 90 Border Security Force (BSF) troopers died due to the Covid-19 infection.
Similarly, Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) lost 76, Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) 20, Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) 17, National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) two and National Security Guard (NSG) lost one of its personnel.
There were 203 casualties of CAPF troopers till March 23, 2021, during the first wave of the pandemic whereas during second wave in March-April this year, a total of 130 personnel lost their lives due to the Covid-19 infection.
The CAPF was also instrumental in setting up various Covid-19 hospitals and care centres, and also rendered medical services with housing and food free of cost.
The border guarding force ITBP was assigned by the Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) to set up the first isolation centre at south-west Delhi's Chhawla area. It houses ITBP sector headquarters and was made in just 48 hours prior to arrival of the first batch from Wuhan in China.
The 600-bed facility in Delhi to quarantine and provide basic medical care to those suspected to have been affected by Covid-19 infection. This centre received and managed the first batch of 406 people taken from Wuhan in China on February 1 and 2 last year who were discharged after testing Covid negative.
The ITBP quarantine facility at Chhawla housed another batch of 112 people on February 27, 2020. These people reached Delhi from Wuhan in China which included 76 Indians and 36 foreign nationals, including eight families and five children. The group of foreign nationals includes 23 from Bangladesh, six from China, two each from Myanmar and Maldives, and one each from Madagascar, South Africa and the US.
Special arrangements have been made to host children and women at the facility, an unoccupied residential unit for ITBP personnel.
The centre was credited to have successfully quarantined 518 people -- (biggest number at any single quarantine centre in the country till now) who were taken from Wuhan in China.
With rising number of Covid-19 cases in Delhi and the National Capital Region, the ITBP was again assigned to manage Asia's largest makeshift Covid care hospital and care centre in South Delhi's Chhatarpur area at Radha Soami Satsang and treat huge numbers of Covid-19 patients. This centre was opened on July 5, 2020 and apart from ITBP, doctors and paramedics from other CAPFs such as BSF and CRPF were roped in providing medical aid to the admitted patients.
The 10,000-bed Sardar Patel COVID Care Centre (SPCCC), one of the "largest" such facilities in the world, at the Radha Soami Satsang played a crucial role in the fight against the pandemic. Official data said that the centre was closed on February 23 this year following continuous decline in the number of Covid positive cases in the National Capital Territory of Delhi vis-a-vis adequate availability of medical facilities. This Centre had treated 11,657 Covid patients since its opening last year.
While a Covid care centre with 90 beds has been reactivated by the force at the CAPFs referral hospital in Greater Noida, another centre with 200-beds has been started at the ITBP camp in Chhawla where the first batch of Indians and some foreigners returning from Wuhan in China were quarantined last year after the pandemic broke out.
A third such facility of 50-60 beds was also set up by the ITBP at its composite hospital in Chandigarh.
During the advent of the second wave of Covid-19 in March-April 2021, the SPCCC at Chhatarpur in Delhi was reopened with 500 oxygen beds and ITBP has been again entrusted to run it. As many as 500 oxygen beds and the ITBP was asked to draw the required medical manpower (doctors and paramedics), if needed from other CAPFs.
The doctors and paramedics of the CAPF were also part of the other Covid Care hospitals in various parts of the country, including the hospitals run by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), in Delhi Cantt and Ahmedabad Covid Care centres provided much needed service to the citizens of the country, said a senior official.
Police Commemoration Day is observed every year on October 21 in the memory of security personnel for their supreme sacrifice while performing duties.